Is your home ready for Christmas?

It will have been a while since any of us have invited guests into our homes and entertained, pandemic allowing, so let’s get organised in the hope Government guidelines allow for a near-normal festive season. Standards may have laxed slightly, so don’t leave preparations to the last minute. I mean preparations beyond decorating the tree and Christmas dinner.

Make a countdown list, the more detailed the better. It’s so good to know what you have left to do and by ploughing through them you’ll feel more in control.

Have a good clean and clear out of the fridge, freezer and your pantry or store-cupboard, allowing plenty of room for home baking and Christmas food.

Know who will be joining you for the festivities, to allow you to buy food, drink, crackers etc, ahead, without leaving everything to the last minute.

If you do have room in the freezer, make a double batch of dinner for the next few nights and freeze those extra portions. It saves having to cook the week before Christmas, when everyone is extra busy getting all those last minute jobs completed. I’m thinking casseroles and soups that are hearty, warm and just what you’ll want on a cold December evening.

The hall is the first room your guests will see so be sure to reduce the number of coats and shoes that are on show. Those summer jackets can be put away, as well as the sandals and flip-flops.

While it feels good to wrap presents as you buy them, I find that wrapping presents all at once lets you see exactly what you’ve bought and if you’ve missed anyone out or doubled up.

Declutter rooms that will be used for entertaining or sleeping guests, though of course decluttering the whole house would be preferable, so you’re starting with a clean slate. Try to find a home for everything.

Declutter your surfaces as well, especially in the kitchen where it will be particularly busy. Try to pare back, beyond what you normally would. With a big Christmas dinner being prepared you can never have enough clear surfaces.

There’s nothing worse than pulling out your best wine glasses only to discover a few dead spiders in them! So be sure to give anything you use for “best” a good wash before the big day.

It’s nice to restock your outside planters, that might be looking a little sad at the moment. A splash of festive colour instantly makes your home look more inviting.

Did you know that more house fires happen around the Christmas period so be sure to test the smoke alarms and replace batteries if needed.

If you’re like the majority of the population you won’t have set eyes on your Christmas decorations since you put them back in the loft on January 6th! So now is a good time to check that nothing has been broken and your fairy lights are all still working.

Whatever your Christmas looks like this year, I hope you enjoy it and stay safe!

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